Friday, December 31, 2010

Ice and a Slice 2011

Have you put a new 2011 calendar up yet? Or are you waiting to buy one in the January sales? Don't be so mean!

I suggest you get in touch with Lynn Cameron and donate to her Children with Leukaemia charity cause for a copy of Ice and a Slice 2011. Some of Scotland's well kent curlers have stripped off for a 'glamour' calendar with a difference. Lynn says, "The calendar is a shining example of men who would go the extra mile to raise money for a children's charity."

The charity's website is here: Children with Leukaemia.

Lynn will be running the London marathon again in April to raise money for this cause. Contact her at: lynny999 at The calendars should also be on sale at many ice rinks.

Here are some descriptions of the 2011 calendar. "Pornographic," The Sun. "Educational," The Guardian. "With bodies like these, Scottish curling is in good hands." The Curling News.

Personal testimonials include 'disgusting' (icegranny, Maybole), 'hilarious' (Skip Cottage, Wamphray), 'beautiful, beautiful' (redhandle, Kinross), 'perfection' (Lynn Cameron), 'erotic' (curlerbored, Canada), 'insulting' (anonymous), 'primitive' (curler2, USA), 'stimulating' (onthehog, The Netherlands), 'more crack than was confiscated in the whole of Scotland last year' (stonethecrows, England), 'an insult to animals' (donkeylover, Ireland), 'I fancy July' (Fiona, Hamilton), 'It will make 2011 much better' (onthepoppy, Millport), 'I wish it was in colour then I could see their rosy cheeks' (welovecurling, Cairnie House).

You will need to part with £10 (minimum) to form your own opinion, and see the other naked curlers featured each month!

Just as an example, January (pictured above) shows (too) much of Graham Shaw and Robin Niven. Graham is on a horse in the main pic (I have been reliably informed he had difficulty getting off), and Robin is doing something with a leek. It's captioned 'Spot the Stallion!' Wonderful, wonderful.

Brad Askew took the super photos in the calendar, and each month has its commercial sponsor. Well done to Lynn, to Brad, and all her models.

Happy New Year to everyone!

CCTV cameras at Forfar 'caught bonny' Jackie Lockhart (herself a former calendar girl in Ana Arce's Fire on Ice), Pat Lockhart and Claire Milne studying the 2011 Ice and a Slice calendar. The whistle blower who sent me this pic wonders which month was creating all the interest!

Pix © Skip Cottage except for the above which is © Forfar Young Curlers.

Forfar roundup

Bruce Mouat encourages his team in the final of the U17 competition at Forfar yesterday.

Angus Dowell and Stuart Taylor work on Robert Fawns' stone.

Rowena Kerr played second stones, and took the head for her skip's shots, in the Mouat team.

Lead Elspeth Lean and third Derrick Sloan.

Angus Dowell, Robert Fawns and Duncan Menzies.

I can confirm that Robbie here went to a good home up in Aberdeen!

Hayley Smith drew the raffle, and since Skip Cottage won a prize, this is to say thank you! Hayley's a photography student in Aberdeen, so I've tried to be artistic with this pic. I'm sure Rolf Harris would have done better.

Here are a couple more from the 3-4 playoff.

This is what happens to your tongue if you eat a lot of licorice!

L-R: Gina Aitken, Fiona Telfer, Vicky Wright

Gina Aitken. Gina, Vicky Wright, Katy Richardson and Rachael Halliday won the Slam Ladies' Prize. The team is pictured here.

Last but not least, here are the winners of the Low Road. L-R: Fraser Thomson, James Hay, James Baird and Grant Barr.

All the results from Forfar and the other Slam events can be found from this page on the Royal Club website.

Photos © Skip Cottage

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Forfar Under 12s

Finlay Campbell, Ross Cormack, Linzi Sim and Lewis Leslie, from Kinross, won the U-12s at Forfar today. The six teams played four four-end games in a Schenkel to decide the winners. It was great to see and I was really impressed with the standard of play.

And everyone who played went home with a selection box!

Photo © Skip Cottage

Win for Mouat at Forfar

I witnessed one of the best pressure shots I've ever seen from a junior curler today. Up 2-1 in the eighth end of the final at the Forfar U17, Bruce Mouat faced three with last stone to come. Drawing the button, through the port, would see him, Derrick Sloan, Rowena Kerr and Elspeth Lean headed for Fussen this summer.

He made it! Well judged by Rowena in the house, and swept by Elspeth and Derrick, Bruce's last stone covered the pin. Magic stuff.

Disappointment this time for Duncan Menzies, Stuart Taylor, Robert Fawns and Angus Dowell.

(It may be tomorrow before I get some action pics from the final online)

L-R: Elspeth Lean, Rowena Kerr, Derrick Sloan and Bruce Mouat. Photo © Skip Cottage

U17 Semis at Forfar

There were two great semifinals at Forfar this morning. Bruce Mouat and his team of Derrick Sloan, Rowena Kerr and Elspeth Lean came back from 4-0 down to win in the last end against Gina Aitken, Vicky Wright, Katy Richardson and Layla Al Saffar who was substituting for Rachael Halliday.

That's Bruce and Katy in the pic above.

The other semifinal matched Stuart Marshall against Duncan Menzies, and this was close for six ends. In the seventh though, Duncan, Stuart Taylor, Robert Fawns and Angus Dowell counted three and there was little chance for Stuart, Fiona Telfer, Katie Murray and Kirsty Morton with just the one end remaining. That's Stuart and Duncan above.

It will be a Menzies-Mouat final this afternoon, with the big prize up for grabs!

Here are a few photos from the morning:

Vicky Wright and Katy Richardson

Gina Aitken

Bruce Mouat

Derrick is saying to Elspeth, "This is a magic brush. If you give it a wee rub a genie will appear and offer to make your wishes come true. Honestly!"

Kirsty Morton, Katie Murray and Fiona Telfer. One feels this should have a caption too!

Stuart shouting at his women!

Duncan Menzies

Layla Al Saffar was a grand substitute for the Aitken team!

That's Fiona's trophy shirt. She's not really changed her nationality.

Stuart delivers with Kirsty and Katie at the ready.

U12s at Forfar

Alongside the U17 Slam at Forfar today, six teams (Forfar x2, Kinross x2, Aberdeen and Perth) are competing in an under-12s competition. Here they all are. Jill Macdonald, the rink's CDO, says, "Great to see all these young people on the ice, and getting away from the usual Christmas activities behind the computer or Wii! So many parents have come to watch and support."

Jill also suggests that perhaps the parents get a bit of piece and quiet with the kids out on the ice, but I suspect that watching your offspring curl is not the most relaxing of experiences!"

Click on the photo to make it bigger!

Here is the view of the three sheeter with the U12s in action.

Photos © Skip Cottage

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

U17 Slam at Forfar

The U17 competition at Forfar, the last of the five events which make up the Slam with its big prizes, has the semifinals tomorrow. Bruce Mouat's team is through, although as I arrived at the rink this afternoon the team was one shot behind and looked in trouble in their second game against Karen Munro. But Bruce played two great shots for the win. The team won their third game too, and will meet Gina Aitken in the semi.

It is already certain that the Gina Aitken team has won the ladies' Slam prize, and that Gina, Vicky Wright, Katy Richardson and Rachael Halliday will be heading for Fussen, to the WCF Camp, next summer.

The Duncan Menzies team will play Stuart Marshall, skipping Jayne Stirling's entry, in the other semifinal.

Just one point separates Mouat and Menzies in the rankings. Hopefully tomorrow I'll have some photos of the action on the ice.

All today's results are here.

The Perfect Day

I've already posted some pics from this venue courtesy of Graeme Young, see here. Here are a few more from Jim Lawrie's farm at Ratho this time from Jenny Barr, of the Currie and Balerno Club. It shows again just how perfect the conditions were for outside curling on December 23.

Jenny says, "We had a ball and maybe if it cools down again, there will be another opportunity…."

Not quite the perfect crampit delivery, but a great action photo.

Get them down the ice any way!

Well soled.

You need to be able to swing the stone, however you use the crampit!

Thanks to Jenny Barr for these photos which are her copyright.

Another Toothy Tale

John has a further Toothy Tale for you to read here, or click on the link on the right.

Curling on the Zuider Zee

It is good to see Jim Hogg obeying the 'Keep Curling Colourful' mantra, even on outside ice! Well done, Jim! Skip Cottage is proud of you.

Jim sends these photos of Holywood CC's bonspiel on Boxing Day, on the Zuider Zee, which I always thought was in the Netherlands but apparently is just north of Dumfries.

I'm not familiar with this venue at all, but it does look great!

The word from Jim was, "An excellent day was had by all, the ice was interesting, but very playable, although the main difference was in the performance of different stones. Special thanks to Robert Hastings who set it all up."

I need names for these two skips. (Now supplied. They are Alex Bryden and Tom Ross.)

And sweeping too!

Photos are by Jane Hogg whose copyright they remain.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

U17 climax

If you follow the under-17 competition circuit, you will already know that the fifth, and final, U17 event to make up the Royal Club Slam gets underway tomorrow at Forfar Indoor Sports.

Just who will be the Slam winners, decided on a team's best three performances, has come right down to the last competition. The standings and points gained over events at Perth, Lockerbie, Greenacres, and Lanarkshire, can be found here, and the 'best of three' positions going into the Forfar event are here.

The big prize of a trip to the World Curling Federation's summer camp will go to either Duncan Menzies side, an all male team of Stuart Taylor, Robert Fawns and Angus Dowell, and Bruce Mouat's mixed team of Derrick Sloan, Rowena Kerr and Elspeth Lean. Just one point separates these two teams in the standings and both are playing at Forfar.

Sixteen teams start at Forfar tomorrow. The draw is here. Results can be found here. The final games are on Thursday at 2pm.

More from Loch Leven

This one escaped the cut when I posted some pics of curling on Loch Leven the other day!

That's Douglas Gordon (on the right) from Kinross CC. I'm not sure if his friend has a name. There are a few more like this here.

Andy Macpherson is the artist apparently, and the photo comes to me courtesy of Bruce Robbie.

Curling on a puddle

I like ingenuity. Kim Brewster (above) has sent some photos of the Brewster clan at Christmas.

She says, "Tom, Ethan and I went for a walk outside Cate and Tom's house and on our walk we came across a frozen puddle which Tom decided would make a brilliant ice pad. So after a few drinks on Christmas Day - a few too many in fact - we ventured across the road to the field and dug out a a decent size ice sheet ready for some competitive fun on Boxing Day!"

These guys are more often seen making the ice at Curl Aberdeen! The Toms Brewster in action.

Tom using a tee-ringer.

This looks a decent sheet of ice!

I wonder if Tom will be playing off the crampit during the next rounds of the Bruadar Scottish Men's Curling Championship? Team Brewster has won five out of five in the Qualifying competition so far, see here.

Never mind the curling, that's quite a sky!

Photos are © Kim Brewster

Monday, December 27, 2010

Curling on Loch Leven

This is the other of the two Grand Match locations - Loch Leven - on Christmas Eve. What a wonderful photo!

Blair Melville, the Secretary of Kinross CC, sent me this report and the links to the photos. He writes, "A few Kinross members and others cleared two sheets on Friday and played under sparkling blue skies. Some of the photos were submitted to STV and Sky News websites, following which Sky News arranged to send a TV crew along on Boxing Day to shoot some scenes and do a live interview with two of our members who had organised things, Jamie Montgomery and Ally Simms. They were slightly disconcerted on being told moments before going live that Sky News goes out worldwide! However, I’m sure they did a great job of promoting Scottish curling."

On Boxing Day there were three sheets in operation with more than fifty people playing, watching and generally enjoying a rare chance to curl on the Loch.

Now there's a sight you don't see every day! Anyone recognise who it is?

This shows how good the ice was, with opportunities for the sweepers to get involved!

Thanks to Blair for sending this. The top photo is from the Green Hotel's Facebook page (more pics here) and the others from Ann Melville's FB album (more here).